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Pittsfield NH News

March 23, 2016

The Suncook Valley Sun News Archive is Maintained by Modern Concepts. We are NOT affliated in any way with the Suncook Valley Sun Newspaper.




Josiah Carpenter Library presents: Our first library art exhibit featuring the ink drawings of local resident, Gene Matras.


This exhibit will run through May 8th at Josiah Carpenter Library, 41 Main Street, Pittsfield, NH 03623 (603) 435-8406.



The Pittsfield Area Senior Center is hosting a Concord Regional Visiting Nurses Association program called, “Boosting Happiness Through Emotional Wellness” on Tuesday, March 29, at 10:30 AM. This event was rescheduled from February due to inclement weather. Much like the seasons, people constantly experience changes in their lives. Emotional wellness is having the ability to understand ourselves and cope with the challenges that life can bring. As an individual ages the opportunity to encounter, a major challenge increases. This can include having to leave one’s home, loss of a loved one, diagnoses of a disease, or a case of winter blues. All of these factors can have a strong impact not only on our bodies, but on our minds as well. Despite the obstacles, your emotional well-being is a crucial factor of your overall health and this workshop will discuss different strategies to manage our emotional health in the face of change and a challenge. Please call the Pittsfield Senior Center at 435-8482 if planning on attending.



Catamount Womenaid will hold its annual bowling night on Saturday, April 16 at Strikers East in Raymond from 6:30 to 9:30. Teams of up to 5 persons, at $125 per team, will bowl for 2 hours with fun prizes. Everyone can participate in vying for raffle prizes. All proceeds go toward providing emergency financial aid for men, women and children in Deerfield, Epsom, Pittsfield and Strafford. Deerfield parents may take advantage of Parents’ Night Out sponsored by Deerfield Parks and Recreation. Register online at



Letter To The Editor


The Pittsfield Food Pantry would like to thank all those who have made monetary and food donations.


All the donations received are used to support families in need within Pittsfield.


Also, thank you to the anonymous donor whose donation allowed us to purchase a new freezer.


Carl O’Brien

Pittsfield Food Pantry



Josiah Carpenter Library To Host Local Author And Travel Writer, Dan Szczesny At PMHS, April 5th


The Josiah Carpenter Library will be hosting New Hampshire author and editor, Dan Szczesny at the Pittsfield Middle High School on April 5th from 1:00-3:00 pm. The event will be held in the school auditorium and will be free and open to the public.  The subject of Mr. Szczesny’s talk will focus on his book entitled “The Nepal Chronicles: marriage, mountains, momos in the highest place on earth,” a wonderful told travel-adventure story of the author’s invitation to Nepal to take part in a traditional Nepalese wedding and to then make the challenging trek to Everest Base Camp with his wife for their honeymoon. In addition, Mr. Szczesny will focus on his writing career and how it has evolved with various life experiences. Being an avid hiker and outdoor adventure seeker, the opportunity to travel and hike the terrain of the Himalayan Mountains was an experience that provided a wonderful opportunity for writing and sharing a monumental achievement.

The book is at once both entertaining and real, as details unfold about the unfamiliar culture. Through observations of geography, people, food, atmosphere and climate we feel as if (instead of “a fly on the wall,”) we are a “mouse in the hiker’s backpack” struggling to breathe the cold hard low oxygenated air as the couple gets closer to their final destination. The Josiah Carpenter Library Read, Meet & Talk book club has selected this title as their book of the month for March. An easy list of various words and their definitions used to describe the culture is also available for anyone to pick up at the library.


In April of 2015, when a series of major earthquakes devastated the region around Kathmandu where they were married and had hiked, Mr. Szczesny and his wife were deeply affected. They returned to Nepal in October of last year and decided to adopt an orphanage called the “Baby Life Home” that was destroyed when the region was struck with this tragedy that left thousands dead, and many more injured and homeless. Through donations from the sale of his book and some “Everest” bandanas, contributions were made to help put a new roof on the orphanage. The Pittsfield Middle High School has a team of students who will be leading a “one grain of rice” campaign to raise additional funds to give to Mr. Szczesny after his presentation for educational supplies for the kids in the orphanage. The Friends of the Josiah Carpenter Library will also be raffling an Eddie Bauer t-shirt, a knot making game and kit and a few books on hiking and Nepalese culture to help with the fund raising efforts.


The library would like to thank the Globe Manufacturing Company and the E.P. Sanderson Fund for their generous donation to the library, making this and other programs possible for the community. Please contact the library at 435-8406 for more information on this program.



Pittsfield Middle High School Inducts New National Honor Society Members

Left to right:  back row:  Kyle Hamel, Chase Gaudette, Keaton Heath, Noah MacGlashing. Middle row: Rachel Thompson, Gabe Anthony, Hannah Conway, Cam Darrah, Katie Rollins, Emma Smith, Meredith Smith, Tucker Wolfe. Front row:  Jordyn Pinto, Emily Dunagin, Lindsey Massey, and Savannah Godin.


The Pittsfield Middle High School chapter of the National Honor Society proudly welcomed ten new members to its organization on Wednesday, March 9th.  The National Honor Society recognizes outstanding high school students that demonstrate excellence in the areas of scholarship, leadership, service, and character.





Dear Pittsfield Voters,

I am extremely thankful and appreciative to those of you who voted to put me on the School Board. As many of you know I am also the chairman of the Economic Development Committee. I believe I bring fresh perspective to the board and promise to make decisions based on what is best for our students and the economic vitality of Pittsfield.


Thanks again for your support.

Ted Mitchell

School Board Member



A Pathway Toward Success

By Ted Mitchell, School Board Member


There has been much made of the “possibility” of Pittsfield closing the Middle High School (PMHS) and bussing our children to other schools. This is an inaccurate representation of a single comment made by a resident at the final Budget Committee hearing, reported by the Concord Monitor. This misrepresentation has created a flurry of comments on Facebook and poisoned the positive atmosphere that Pittsfield has enjoyed about the progress our school is making toward student centered learning.


Let’s go back a step… Our community gathered together in 2008 to start the process of recreating an education system that would meet our children’s needs and get the school back on a firm footing. Our superintendent and School Board, with the support of the community, chartered a course that has made PMHS an example of what a 21st century school should be like. We now have a school known across the country for it’s innovative thinking and progress.


In the past couple of years PMHS has been visited by educational representatives from around the country. They wanted to get first hand knowledge of our leadership, programs and progress. They have sat in on various groups of students and interviewed the superintendent, deans, teachers, students and community members. To a person, they have expressed amazement at our unified resolve to make our school the best it can be and  how our students are engaged in the process. They have been especially impressed in the way our students are able to articulate their understanding of subject matter.


These visitors have come from: the Council for Chief School Officers/Innovation Learning Network; Brandeis University; Enosburgh, VT; Fairfield, OH; Melrose, MA; National Governor’s Association; NC New Schools; Biddeford, ME; Brookfield, MA; Providence, RI;  Burlington Winooski, VT; Yorville, IL; UMASS;  Platt HS, CT; Emily Richmond, Educator Writing Association; Unleashing the Power of Partnership for Learning, VT; Knowledgeworks; Nextgen; American Youth Policy Forum; Heinemann Publishers; Schoolworks and Andy Littlefield, Virtual Learning Academy. Visits from NH schools include: Kearsarge Regional HS; SAU #23, Woodsville; Alton Central School; Litchfield Campbell HS; Wilton-Lyndenborough Cooperative; Manchester West; Pembroke Academy; Gilford; SAU-72, Alton and Winnisquam Regional HS. In addition, we have been visited by international educators from: Laos, Cambodia, Thailand and Malaysia. Requests from across the country continue for visits to PMHS.


Pittsfield school district and PMHS Administrators, teachers and students have visited several schools and events around the country, including: Washington, D.C. (PMHS Reps presented to a national education conference); San Diego, CA and Dallas, TX. Other invitations are being received regularly.


The Atlantic, a national magazine, has published two lengthy articles on our middle high school. Another national news magazine, U.S. and News & World  Report has listed PMHS as one of the top 20 high schools in the northeast.


Educational videos of PMHS are being used nationally to exemplify student centered learning.


PMHS is one of the first and a top leader in transforming schools nationwide. I am proud of what has been accomplished but I’m well aware of the long road still to be traveled. WE WILL GET THERE.



Letter To The Editor


To the Editor,

On behalf of the Josiah Carpenter Library, its board of trustees and staff, I am writing to all of the voters of Pittsfield who participated in the annual town meeting last Saturday.


Thank you for your generous support in approving the warrant article allotting $10,000 to the library.


Your generosity is noteworthy in these times of tough budget decisions and rising tax rates.  It is especially noteworthy given that you made that commitment without the benefit of a discussion, or an explanation of the reasons behind the request.  I was remiss in not getting up to tell you why that money is needed.


This $10,000 will be used to make repairs to the library foundation and the granite retaining walls that line the handicap access.  Work done years ago exposed the foundation and water leaking into the lower level has become a consistent problem.  The cost to make the necessary repairs exceeds what the library’s regular operating budget can cover.


Your decision to support the library in this way is an acknowledgment of Pittsfield’s past, and an investment in its future.  The building is an anchor for the downtown and the institution is an asset in which every citizen may take justifiable pride.  Your vote to allocate the $10,000 is about more than a simple question of dollars and cents.


Speaking for the board of trustees, I applaud and thank you for your vision.



J. C. Allard

Chair, Carpenter Library Board of Trustees



Thank You To The Suncook Valley Rotary Club By Carole Richardson


It was a distinct honor to be invited to the March 16th meeting of the Suncook Valley Rotary Club where I received a $500 donation for the Floral Park Cemetery Fence Fund.   It was especially meaningful to me because I know how difficult it is to raise funds for various projects.  There are so many great clubs and organizations in the Pittsfield area that have such wonderful projects, and also benefit from the hard work of the Rotarians and their generosity.  With this donation, I now have $11,000 for Phase 3 of the Fence Fund with another $9,000 needed by May 30th in order to complete this year’s portion of the fence.  (To date, $51,000 has been collected out of the estimated $80,000 for the entire project.)   Thank you also to the Pittsfield Players for the delicious meal they prepared and served.   



Maundy Thursday And Easter Services


First Congregational Church, 24 Main Street, Pittsfield, will hold a special Maundy Thursday worship service including Holy Communion, commemorating the “Last Supper” of Jesus, this Thursday, March 24, at 7 p.m. Special music will be provided by the Chancel Choir and the JuBellation Handbell Choir.


On Easter Sunday, March 27, at 7 a.m., the customary Sunrise Service will be held in the Sanctuary with breakfast immediately following (about 8 a.m.) in the Vestry. The traditional Easter worship service will commence at 10:00 a.m. with special music by the Chancel Choir and JuBellation. Come and worship at either service and join us for breakfast!


There is parking and a wheelchair accessible entrance at the rear of the church at Chestnut Street. For more information about either of these services, call the church office at 435-7471 and speak with Rev. Dave Stasiak.





To the Citizens of Pittsfield,

I would like to thank everyone who came out and voted on Election day and supported Pittsfield’s future.  I also want to congratulate Carole and Carl on their victory, I also look forward to working with the new Board of Selectman. What a great turnout we had on election day, I had many good discussions about our community. I will give it my best to represent the citizens of our community. We have a lot of work to get done and we all need to be a part of it. Please stop by at our select board meetings, one of my goals is to have more public involvement with all of us working together. I look forward to serving Pittsfield.


Thank You

Larry Konopka



VA Announces Community Care Call Center To Help Veterans With Choice Program Billing Issues

Submitted Via Merrill Vaughan


WASHINGTON – Veterans can now work directly with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to resolve debt collection issues resulting from inappropriate or delayed Choice Program billing. In step with MyVA’s efforts to modernize VA’s customer-focused, Veteran-centered services capabilities, a Community Care Call Center has been set up for Veterans experiencing adverse credit reporting or debt collection resulting from inappropriately billed Choice Program claims. Veterans experiencing these problems can call 1-877-881-7618 for assistance.


“As a result of the Veterans Choice Program, community providers have seen thousands of Veterans. We continue to work to make the program more Veteran-friendly,” said Dr. David Shulkin, Under Secretary for Health. “There should be no bureaucratic burden that stands in the way of Veterans getting care.”


The new call center will work to resolve instances of improper Veteran billing and assist community care medical providers with delayed payments.  VA staff are also trained and ready to work with the medical providers to expunge adverse credit reporting on Veterans resulting from delayed payments to providers.VA is urging Veterans to continue working with their VA primary care team to obtain necessary health care services regardless of adverse credit reporting or debt collection activity.


VA acknowledges that delayed payments and inappropriately billed claims are unacceptable and have caused stress for Veterans and providers alike.  The new call center is the first step in addressing these issues.  VA presented The Plan to Consolidate Community Care in October of 2015 that outlines additional solutions to streamline processes and improve timely provider payment.


For more details about the Veterans Choice Program and VA’s progress, visit: . Veterans seeking to use the Veterans Choice Program can call1-866-606-8198 to find out more about the program, confirm their eligibility and schedule an appointment.



Jump Rope For Heart!

Submitted by Laura Smith, PES Physical Education Teacher

First grade students (from left to right) Jack Argue, Luciano Pecorino, John Schuster, Colvin St. Germain, Catherine Butler, and Logan Leeds.


On February 19th, over 100 students and parent volunteers joined together in the Pittsfield Elementary School gymnasium to celebrate three weeks of fundraising for the American Heart Association. Using long ropes, short ropes, Chinese jump ropes, and hula hoops, students engaged in fun, heart healthy activities. We are thankful for the parents who came and supported our efforts by bringing a healthy snack or by simply turning a rope. Together the Pittsfield community raised over $5,200.00! It was an outstanding event!


Food Safety Workshop For Poultry And Rabbit Producers The passing of House Bill 608 allows producers to sell poultry and rabbits (up to 1000 each) directly to restaurants in New Hampshire without USDA inspection. The bill includes a training requirement that must be met by the producer pertaining to food safety.


UNH Cooperative Extension is offering a workshop for poultry and rabbit producers on Thursday, April 21 from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. in Lee that fulfills this training requirement and will help producers develop a working plan for providing safe meat products for this new market. The cost of the workshop is $50 per person, including lunch, and $25 for an additional attendee from the same farm.


Workshop pre-registration is necessary and can be completed online by April 14 at Directions to the workshop will be provided on the registration’s confirmation page.


For more information, contact Daimon Meeh at [email protected] or (603) 679-5616.


UNH Cooperative Extension puts trusted information and practical know-how in the hands of citizens and businesses in New Hampshire. Extension is at work in every New Hampshire county, making the state’s critical industries stronger; developing vibrant communities and municipal leaders; fostering healthy families and an informed and engaged citizenry, and keeping the state’s natural resources healthy and productive.



Letter To The Editor


Well, I promised a brief outline of last night’s selectboard meeting, so here goes; We heard from all 3 department heads. It seemed like a good time to acknowledge the elephant in the room with regard to concerns about the size and scope of the police department, as well as townspeople’s perceptions of both the police department and the fire department.


I would describe the conversation as candid. This was public session so the minutes carry more detail and are open to everyone.


The ban on overnight parking instituted last year was discussed with Chief Cain defending the ordinance and several of us questioning the necessity. This is a subject that should have input from as much of the public as possible, so the board can administer to the satisfaction of the townspeople.


In addition, the board voted to have Larry approach surrounding towns to determine if they might be receptive to sharing departments such as police, fire and rescue. This approach would spread the cost of these big budget items between two or more towns, thereby saving costs while still providing quality service to not only ourselves, but our neighbors as well.


A meeting will be announced for informal public input on the parking ban, department sharing, and any other concerns that you want addressed.


I think we got off to a good start- but that’s all it was- a start. Much more to come.


The meeting was well attended by the public- I personally would like to see it standing room only, so if you can get away on a Tuesday night, we start at 6PM!


Carl Anderson



The Peace Lily

Submitted By Gini Hayes of Forget Me Not Florist and Gifts


The Peace Lily is not really a lily at all. These plants belong to a plant family commonly known as Spath.


Peace lilies are popular indoor plants not only because of their rich green leaves and white “flowers,” but because they are easy to care for. They need medium/low light and watering only when soil is dry. In fact, they can endure periods of drought if left unattended for short periods of time.


These plants represent peace, purity, hope, and innocence.


They are also listed by NASA as a plant that helps purify indoor air by filtering chemicals such as benzene. Other sources list acetone and formaldehyde as toxins that the Peace Lily filters.



Letter To The Editor


To the good citizens of Pittsfield,

Just got back from Town Meeting. This is what I tried to say:


1. Oregon, Colorado, Washington, Alaska, Washington D.C. have allowed marijuana use. Pittsfield will not be outdone.


2. No one is going to the emergency room over marijuana, in Pittsfield.


3. 223,671 Granite Staters - 21% of adults, according to the State, use marijuana. There were 870,000 arrested for marjuana in this country. Last year, 60 people serving life in prison, makes me wanna puke. This is a civil rights issue.


4. The police have the power to lock us up. The people have the power of protest.


I’m done with Town Meeting. The time has come to protest. See you on 4/20.


Dan Schroth Piermarocchi








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